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Nikah No Longer Legally Valid Form Of Marriage In The UK

In the wake of a recent decision by the Court of Appeal in the United Kingdom, the Muslim Nikah ceremony will no longer be a legally valid marriage ceremony in that country. The decision came in the context of a divorce case.

Nasreen Akhter and Mohammed Shabaz Khan had been married via a nikah ceremony in 1998, in the presence of an Imam and guests. No further civil ceremony was done at that time.

In 2016, with the couple separated, Mohammed Shabaz Khan sought to block divorce proceedings by arguing that they had married only under Shariah Law, and not under UK law. Nasreen Akhtar had taken the position that she ought to be afforded the same protection as that in any other marriage.

The Court of Appeal has now reversed a decision from two years ago, which had declared nikah a legal form of marriage under UK law.

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